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Poet's Choice Hardcover – March 1, 1998

5 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Making poetry part of everyday life was the theme of Hass' two-year term as poet laureate, a mission that inspired the creation of "Poet's Choice," his weekly column for the Washington Post. Each week he selected a poem in sync with the season and offered pithy and insightful commentary, a feature so popular it quickly went into syndication. He has now gathered those columns into a deeply pleasurable anthology of outstanding poems by the likes of William Carlos Williams, Stanley Kunitz, Theodore Roethke, Denise Levertov, Maxine Kumin, and W. S. Merwin. Hass reminds us of the importance of reading and literature, recounting the truly heroic achievement of nearly universal literacy during the nineteenth century and the hallowed place that literature then had in the pages of daily newspapers, a focus that helped make this nation strong, but which we now seem to be devaluing to an alarming degree. Hass is certainly doing his part to keep literature vital, and even the most poetry-phobic of readers will feel welcome here. Donna Seaman


Dark Lines by Virginia Hamilton Adair
Famous Night by Odysseus Alepoudeli
Death Fugue by Paul Antschel
An Ear, Severed, Listens by Paul Antschel
An Eye, Cut In Strips by Paul Antschel
From The Four-finger-furrow by Paul Antschel
Landinwards, Hither by Paul Antschel
Paths In The Shadow-break by Paul Antschel
Whitegray Of by Paul Antschel
Mr. Giai's Poem by John Balaban
Why's/wise: Wise 3 by Amiri Baraka
The Current by Wendell Berry
Come, My Beloved by Bible
Oh! Come With Me, My Bride by Bible
Guilty Of Dust by Frank Bidart
Nocturne by Eavan Boland
Inventory by Laure-anne Bosselaar
I Write From An Empire Whose Enormous Flanks by Joseph Brodsky
A Part Of Speech, Sels. by Joseph Brodsky
Therefore, Sleep Well. Sweet Dreams. Knit Up That Sleeve by Joseph Brodsky
O Little Town Of Bethlehem by Phillips Brooks
Peat Cutting by George Mackay Brown
Runes From The Island Of Horses: Winter by George Mackay Brown
In Order To Find Your Absolute Calendar, Fr. Pollen Memory by Laynie Brown
Memory Is The Vessel A Shell Becomes, Fr. Pollen Memory by Laynie Brown
Green Grow The Rashes, O by Robert Burns
Snow Storm by Hayden Carruth
Waiting For The Barbarians by Constantine P. Cavafy
The New-england Boy's Song About Thanksgiving Day by Lydia Maria Child
Mouse's Nest by John Clare
Entering The South by Lucille Clifton
Fox by Lucille Clifton
Middle Of The Journey by Dante Alighieri
Blues by Jon Edward Davis
The Education Of Desire: 12 by William Dickey
As Imperceptibly As Grief by Emily Dickinson
The Bat by Emily Dickinson
Fleamarkey by Stephen Dobyns
Sympathy (1) by Paul Laurence Dunbar
Harding, Wilson, Taft, Roosevelt by Robert Duncan
The Groundhog by Richard Ghormley Eberhart
View Of The Library Of Congress From Paul Laurence Dunbar High School by Thomas Sayers Ellis
Among Our Great Ceremonies by Laura Fargas
Kuan Yin by Laura Fargas
The Sunflowers by Alice B. Fogel
Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening by Robert Frost
Against The Rest Of The Year by James Galvin
Mountain Passes Of Lime Were Walling In The Empty Sky by Federico Garcia Lorca
A Supermarket In California by Allen Ginsberg
Penelope's Song by Louise Gluck
The Day Of The Dead by Janice Gould
Of The Ever-changing Agitation In The Air by Jorie Graham
Steering Wheel by Jorie Graham
Jamesian by Thomson William Gunn
Lesson by Forrest Hamer
The Darkling Thrush by Thomas Hardy
Those Winter Sundays by Robert Earl Hayden
Postscript by Seamus Heaney
Singing School: 6. Exposure by Seamus Heaney
Time's Body by Brenda Lynn Hillman
Knowing Nothing by Jane Hirshfield
Movies by James Langston Hughes
Poem by James Langston Hughes
Out Here The Pavement's by Lynda Hull
A Prayer That Asks by Lynda Hull
We Perfected All The Pictures by Lynda Hull
Carmel Point by Robinson Jeffers
Life Draws A Tree by Roberto Juarroz
By The Rivers by Shirley Kaufman
Extracts From An Opera: 2. Daisy's Song by John Keats
I'll Put Your Basket All Safe In A Nook by John Keats
To Autumn by John Keats
Mosaic Of The Nativity: Serbia, Winter, 1993 by Jane Kenyon
Blackberry Eating by Galway Kinnell
Haiku by Kobayashi Issa
Haiku by Kobayashi Issa
Haiku by Kobayashi Issa
Haiku by Kobayashi Issa
Haiku by Kobayashi Issa
Haiku by Kobayashi Issa
New Year's Eve 1959 by Maxine W. Kumin
The Abduction by Stanley Jasspon Kunitz
River Birch In November by E.j. Miller Laino
Toward A Definition Of Love by David Lehman
In Summer by Denise Levertov
The Trace by Denise Levertov
At Yuan Tan-chi'iu's Mountain Home by Li Po
South Of The Yangtze, Thinking Of Spring by Li Po
Memory by Abraham Lincoln
Sunday by Timothy Liu
Inauguration Day: January 1953 by Robert Lowell
Criss Cross Apple Sauce by Thomas Lux
At A Heritage by Matsuo Munefusa
Departure Poem by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Haiku by Matsuo Munefusa
Poem Ending With A Line From Dante by William Matthews
Passing A Truck Full Of Chickens At Night On Highway Eighty by Jane Mead
Snow Jobs by James Ingram Merrill
Summer Canyon by William Stanley Merwin
Separation by Jane Miller
Horror Movie by Howard Moss
Hinx, Minx, The Old Witch Winks by Mother Goose
How Many Miles To Babylon? by Mother Goose
The Invention Of Cuisine by Carol Anne Muske
The Bottom Line, Sels. by Dennis O'driscoll
A Young Matron Dances Free Of The Island by Mary O'malley
Her First Week by Sharon Olds
The Cinnamon Peeler by Michael Ondaatje
Autobiography by Michael Palmer
On The Wing: 1 [al Vuelo] by Octavio Paz
Freeze by Carl Phillips
Ginza Samba by Robert Pinsky
Shirt by Robert Pinsky
Sonnet by Robert Pinsky
Day by Adelia Prado
Dysrhythmia by Adelia Prado
Sonnet: 17 by Naftali Ricardo Reyes Basuato
George Crabbe by Edwin Arlington Robinson
My Papa's Waltz by Theodore Roethke
Arroyo Seco by Martha Ronk
The Moon Over L.a. by Martha Ronk
December Moon by Eleanor May Sarton
Missing by Jane Shore
The Front Man by Charlie Smith
Surrounded By Wild Turkeys by Gary Snyder
We Needed Fire To Make by Susan Stewart
In Praise Of Self-deprecation by Wislawa Szymborska
Portrait Of A Woman by Wislawa Szymborska
Returns by Wislawa Szymborska
At The Grave Of E. A. Robinson by Henry Splawn Taylor
Country Church (manafon) by Ronald Stuart Thomas
In A Country Church by Ronald Stuart Thomas
Brown Owls by Anonymous
Gray Goose And Gander %waft Your Wings Together by Anonymous
Magpie Song (gambling Song) by Anonymous
The Noise Of The Village by Anonymous
Ruby Lips Above The Water by Anonymous
Song Of The Thunders by Anonymous
Song Of The Trees by Anonymous
This Is The Double Bed Where She'd Been Born by Ellen Bryant Voigt
Never Get Used To This by Derek Walcott
Instinct by Charles Kenneth Williams
Fine Work With Pitch And Copper by William Carlos Williams
Spring And All by William Carlos Williams
Masterful Images by William Butler Yeats
Players And Painted Stage by William Butler Yeats
Haiku by Yosa Buson
Haiku by Yosa Buson
Haiku by Yosa Buson
February by Zhao Zhenkai
-- Table of Poems from Poem Finder®

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Ecco; 1 edition (March 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0880015667
  • ISBN-13: 978-0880015660
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #865,897 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Robert Hass was born in San Francisco in 1941. He attended St. Mary's College and Stanford University. His books of poetry include Time and Materials, for which he received the Pulitzer Prize in 2007 and the National Book Award in 2008; Sun Under Wood, for which he received the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1996; Human Wishes; Praise, for which he received the William Carlos Williams Award in 1979; and Field Guide, which was selected by Stanley Kunitz for the Yale Younger Poets Series. Hass also worked with Czeslaw Milosz to translate a dozen volumes of Milosz's poetry, including the book-length Treatise on Poetry and, most recently, A Second Space. His translations of the Japanese haiku masters have been collected in The Essential Haiku: Versions of Basho, Buson, and Issa. His books of essays include Twentieth Century Pleasures: Prose on Poetry, which received the National Book Critics Circle Award for criticism in 1984, and Now and Then: The Poet's Choice Columns, 1997-2000. From 1995 to 1997 he served as poet laureate of the United States. He lives in northern California with his wife, the poet Brenda Hillman, and teaches English at the University of California at Berkeley.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This volume collects Robert Haas's columns on poetry, which he published in the Washington Post during his time as poet laureate. Although they are organized seasonally, that structure does not become cloying. Haas presents a poem, suggesting ways in which the language works, offering some background on the writer or the volume in which he found it. I enjoy dipping into the volume and have bought copies for friends. I am considering adopting it as a supplement in my Study of Poetry class. If you enjoy poetry, but have not been actively paying attention to contemporary writers, this book is a must buy.
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Format: Hardcover
Hass, our recent Poet Laureate, selects from his weekly column on poetry in the Washington Post Book World every Sunday, now syndicated around the country. Through the seasons, Hass introduces modern poets and not-so-modern, with a story, some biographical tidbits, an appreciative interpretation. His affection for poetry is on every page, his appreciation broad and deep, and his touch with those of us who are not used to reading poetry very often is sensitive. As a book to dip into time and again, as a book to introduce oneself to modern poetry and poets and the traditions from which they sprang, as a gift of one fine poet to a wider audience ... this book is a gem.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Haas has a very keen mind and a profound understanding of what elevates some poems to a higher plane. His choices and the little bits of commentary, not just about the individual poems, but also about poetry in general, are readable and intelligent. This collection comes from a column he did for a newspaper some years ago, so virtually all of the poems are accessible to most readers.
Here's the thing: I spent a lot of my years working with poems as a teacher, but it has been a long time since then, and I've been out of touch with the sublime experience that is reading good poetry. This book brought all that back, and the collection Haas has here might be the best I've ever read.
Haas served as Poet Laureate of the United States from 1995 to 1997 and as a Chancellor of The Academy of American Poets from 2001 to 2007. He knows good poems.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a unique anthology of poetry at a universal level. Haas' selection covers a wide range of powtry from all periods and many countries. Inspiring, amazing, thoughtful.

The poems are arranged by seasons, a poem per day. The ideal poetry to read every day or night.
Wonderful to have aon your night table.
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